Best budget turntable?

Aug 12, 2019
34
6
10
50
Have just 'inherited' a vinyl collection but don't have anyhting to play them on. Looking for a budget turntable. What would you guys suggest? Completely new to vinyl so need something relatively easy to set-up and understand.
 

bazelio

Well-Known Member
Sep 27, 2016
1,712
1,047
245
California
What's the budget? @Solypsa sells a direct drive TT that looks really interesting and isn't outrageous in price Otherwise, Clearaudio, Roksan, Acoustic Signature are a few starting points. You should try to listen to a few.
 

kach22i

WBF Founding Member
Apr 21, 2010
1,555
190
545
Ann Arbor, Michigan
www.kachadoorian.com
What's the budget? @Solypsa sells a direct drive TT that looks really interesting and isn't outrageous in price Otherwise, Clearaudio, Roksan, Acoustic Signature are a few starting points. You should try to listen to a few.
This German one that goes for over $5,000?

http://solypsa.com/stst/

I read about a Made in USA one yesterday that includes tonearm and cartilage and is in the $200-$500 range.

https://uturnaudio.com/collections/all?gclid=EAIaIQobChMIoJ_O7Myc5wIVGv_jBx3zMQJSEAAYASAAEgLvJ_D_BwE

Most people recommend a Rega for the budget minded from what I've read.

I suggest you get your feet wet for about $300 and then work your way up into the more expensive stuff once you get hooked. Some tables have an upgradable path, but if you only put $200-$300 into it and can get some of your money back when upgrading at your local Hi-Fi shop that might be the better path.

Leave money for a Audio Advisor Record cleaner ($200), record cleaning fluid ($40), Milty ZeroStat Gun ($120), some stylus cleaner/brush ($30), and for tough records a drapery steamer ($40). And don't forget perhaps the most important part, the cartridge alignment tool.

I suggest going to a local Hi-End shop that carries some entry level tables like Rega, they can set you up and do the often difficult cartilage alignment. The DB System one I got works best with cartiages that have parallel sides, and Grado cartiages like mine do not have parallel sides - I got by. However to do more than just get by a proper shop aligns via a readout and gives you the assurance that you will get the most out of your table setup. So many settings on a table, best to let an expert fuss with it unless to really want to learn, and who learns without making a few mistakes?

How many live concerts can you go to with $5,000 extra in your pocket?

EDIT:

The Cardas LP ($30) is another useful tool.
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: audiomonkey777

shakti

Well-Known Member
May 9, 2015
1,020
1,221
375
Cologne, Germany
I would always buy vintage, as you do not loose money over time.
And if you start vinyl, you will like to upgrade your system....

- CEC Chuo Denki ST 930

- Micro Seiki DQX 500
- Micro Seiki DQX 1000
- Micro Seiki DDX 1500

- SEE Revolver

- Rega Planar 3

- and more
 

bonzo75

Member Sponsor
Feb 26, 2014
16,597
6,316
1,215
London
The STST Motus 2, is a very good TT extremely. Musical. I have compared it directly to Dohmann 2. The latter was thrice priced and had bit more detail but I would have walked away with the STST. In fact it is my target value TT. I have heard it in other systems apart from the below

http://zero-distortion.org/analog-shoot-anamighty-sound/
 
  • Like
Reactions: gian60 and shakti

kach22i

WBF Founding Member
Apr 21, 2010
1,555
190
545
Ann Arbor, Michigan
www.kachadoorian.com
- Micro Seiki DDX 1500
I would love a quality classic like that at an affordable price.

However, be aware that the gentlemen at my local Hi-Fi shop (Linn dealer) that take consignments warned me that they take very few used tables in because older turntables in general wear out and have rumble issues.

If it passes a simple stethoscope test they go on to more rigorous methods to determine it's viability.

They will not sell junk and bench test everything they sell. Dealing with a shop like that should make one feel better, but don't expect Internet bid pricing.

Would this Linn be a better value than a new table?

Listed January 24, 2020
Linn Basik Turntable with Akito Arm & Roksan Corus Cartridge.
https://www.audiogon.com/listings/l...h-akito-arm-roksan-corus-cartridge-turntables
New Retail Price: $1,495.00
$897.00

Canadian dollars?

The only issue is the hinges on the dustcover are broken so the lid does not stay in the open upright position. The cover is easily removable altogether for use and the system does sound better with it off anyway.

A lot of tables do not even come with a dust cover, you have to get one made at a plastics shop.
 
Last edited:

microstrip

VIP/Donor
May 30, 2010
18,014
2,474
810
Portugal
IMHO it would be great to know what is your suggested budget and particularly some details about your system and music preference.
 

ddk

Industry Expert
May 19, 2013
5,559
2,684
920
Utah
Have just 'inherited' a vinyl collection but don't have anyhting to play them on. Looking for a budget turntable. What would you guys suggest? Completely new to vinyl so need something relatively easy to set-up and understand.
As someone new I highly recommend working with a local dealer and buying what they recommend and are willing to setup for you, turntables aren't plug and play!

david
 

tima

Industry Expert
Mar 4, 2014
3,103
2,999
600
the Upper Midwest
Have just 'inherited' a vinyl collection but don't have anyhting to play them on. Looking for a budget turntable. What would you guys suggest? Completely new to vinyl so need something relatively easy to set-up and understand.

I would first look at the condition of the records you received or have someone with vinyl experience do that for you. If the records are mediocre, you may be disappointed or not enjoy the vinyl experience. If the records are in pretty good condition you'll need to clean them. Maybe take some to a friend's house or record store and play them to see what you think. This may seem off-putting or less fun than first buying a turntable, but costs little while increasing your chances for long term enjoyment.
 

daytona600

Well-Known Member
Sep 10, 2012
637
82
375
scotland
Project every colour shape & type of turntable from $200 to $8,000
 
  • Like
Reactions: audiomonkey777

twitch

Well-Known Member
Jun 17, 2010
449
137
490
SE Pa
I would first look at the condition of the records you received or have someone with vinyl experience do that for you. If the records are mediocre, you may be disappointed or not enjoy the vinyl experience. If the records are in pretty good condition you'll need to clean them. Maybe take some to a friend's house or record store and play them to see what you think. This may seem off-putting or less fun than first buying a turntable, but costs little while increasing your chances for long term enjoyment.

good points and as George said you also need to be aware of the other ancillary items that you will need.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Jon

kach22i

WBF Founding Member
Apr 21, 2010
1,555
190
545
Ann Arbor, Michigan
www.kachadoorian.com
FYI: I've never had good luck with those carbon fiber brushes. They just seem to add surface noise, never figured out if they just pushed dirt deeper into the grooves or increased static from friction, or both.

EDIT: Additional stuff..................

A sturdy audio rack or better yet a turntable wall shelf ($180-$1,800).

I've seen people use some things from Ikea , tables, cubes, consoles and so forth that actually looked pretty good, and the owners were raving about it too.

Is 27.5" the idea height ($129) ?
 
Last edited:

Solypsa

Well-Known Member
Jun 7, 2017
775
457
160
Seattle
www.solypsa.com
I would first look at the condition of the records you received or have someone with vinyl experience do that for you...
Good advice. Just be aware that visual condition does NOT always relate to playback quality. Of course huge scratches etc. yes...
 
Aug 12, 2019
34
6
10
50
Okay guys - lots to consider then.

Budget would be up to £500 to start with I guess as I'm aslo trying to sort out my digital set-up (over in another thread lol) - although I have to say I'm getting more and more excited about getting into the vinyl.

First bit of advice I;m going to take is to take these records to a local guy who seems to know his way around vinyl and get him to look at the quality. On the surface some seem better than others. I'll shoot some examples and drop them in here when I get chance.

Next thing I'm doing is looking up some of the pieces you've suggested. I warn you know, I may have more questions! Thanks guys. I really appreciate the feedback and advice.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Mr Rickz

Mr Rickz

Active Member
Dec 27, 2019
40
27
25
71
Southern California
As mentioned above, a TT from Rega and Project are a good place to start. They offer units in your price range that are pretty much plug-and-play.

If you decide that you want to go deeper into vinyl, the rabbit hole goes very deep.
 

kach22i

WBF Founding Member
Apr 21, 2010
1,555
190
545
Ann Arbor, Michigan
www.kachadoorian.com
I guess that I can no longer edit my previous post, so I'll post the video in this post.

2016
VIDEO: Michael Fremer Recommends Vinyl Accessories For The Budget Audiophile

The yellow record bath is only $79, and that is less than half of the noisy vacuum model that messes with your hearing I mentioned earlier. I can were hearing protection but that does not protect me from hearing my wife complain about it. :D
 
  • Wow
Reactions: gilles13

Folsom

VIP/Donor
Oct 26, 2015
5,571
1,169
475
Eastern WA
I would go vintage over any Rega/Project thing. IMO they're junk. Used Thorens 16X, JVC QL-7, Linn Basic, maybe some others. You may have to hunt a little locally, but it's worth it. Save a few $ for cartridge. And then you have to learn to set it up. (David's advice having a local dealer do setup sounds nice, but I say learn to do it because they're not going to sell anything good at that price point)

But this is all presuming the records are playable.
 
  • Like
Reactions: ddk

kach22i

WBF Founding Member
Apr 21, 2010
1,555
190
545
Ann Arbor, Michigan
www.kachadoorian.com
I would go vintage over any Rega/Project thing. IMO they're junk. Used Thorens 16X, JVC QL-7, Linn Basic, maybe some others. You may have to hunt a little locally, but it's worth it. Save a few $ for cartridge. And then you have to learn to set it up. (David's advice having a local dealer do setup sounds nice, but I say learn to do it because they're not going to sell anything good at that price point)

But this is all presuming the records are playable.
The Rega and Pro-Ject are junk compared to vintage in the same price range?

I have heard them, and to put it nicely you get what you pay for. That is not junk, that is called value in my opinion.

At the entry levels CD playback is often better for the same money.

The upgrade path on a Linn is an attractive selling point, this is an even better value, but more money.
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: asiufy and twitch

About us

  • What’s Best Forum is THE forum for high end audio, product reviews, advice and sharing experiences on the best of everything else. This is THE place where audiophiles and audio companies discuss vintage, contemporary and new audio products, music servers, music streamers, computer audio, digital-to-analog converters, turntables, phono stages, cartridges, reel-to-reel tape machines, speakers, headphones and tube and solid-state amplification. Founded in 2010 What’s Best Forum invites intelligent and courteous people of all interests and backgrounds to describe and discuss the best of everything. From beginners to life-long hobbyists to industry professionals, we enjoy learning about new things and meeting new people, and participating in spirited debates.

Quick Navigation

User Menu

Steve Williams
Site Founder | Site Owner | Administrator
Ron Resnick
Site Co-Owner | Administrator
Julian (The Fixer)
Website Build | Marketing Managersing